ESRI has been selected by SAP as a development partner. As such, ESRI will work closely with SAP on joint development projects aimed at bringing geographic information system (GIS) functionality including spatial analysis and visualization, to various applications making up SAP's R/3 flagship product. "This is exciting work because we are responding to the needs of the market, both for SAP users and for ESRI users," says Jack Dangermond, ESRI's president. "By providing a total information solution, users in small, medium, and large organizations will have the ability to harness spatial analysis within the powerful SAP enterprise environment." Hasso Plattner, SAP's CEO said "We view this as an important step in advancing our software to help businesses get the most out of their software and data. With a large amount of data in corporate databases having a geographic component, accessing spatial information in R/3 will complement and further support a wide variety of business activities, from decision support to supply chain optimization and customer service." Using ESRI components within SAP's new Business Information Warehouse will provide users with the ability to use GIS analysis and visualization tools on information in SAP, such as customer location and sales information. In addition ESRI's ArcView GIS, ArcLogistics, and ArcView Business Analyst software will all have direct interfaces to the R/3 software through SAP's Business Application Programming Interface (BAPI) concept.
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